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. >>> keep it here as the clock ticks to the fiscal cliff. we are live on capitol hill and at the white house. plus we'll be back with a full hour at 2:00 p.m. eastern here in the cnn newsroom. we'll see you then. >>> it was one of the most important diplomatic missions in history. also one of the most clandestine and risky. four decades ago henry kissinger, then president nixon's national security adviser, secretly flew to china beginning a string of meetings that would eventually open that isolated eastern nation to the western world. that opening checked soviet expansionism and in a sense was the beginning of the end of the cold war. >> this was the week that changed the world. >> it was also the beginning of china's entry into the world economy, which has resulted in that country becoming the world's second largest economy. >> red china's battle plan. >> but back then the idea of a rapprochement with china would have been rejected as pure fantasy. china was a communist regime that had been fighting america and its allies across the globe. how did the decision come about in the midst of su
and vote on a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff. in his first sunday talk show appearance in three years, president obama today called for congress to at least extend middle class tax cuts and unemployment benefits if no fiscal deal is reached. tax hike increase take effect january 1st. >>> the situation in the war-torn country is getting worse by the day. this weekend is proving him right. opposition activists say at least 397 people were killed across syria yesterday alone. if true, the deadliest day yet in almost two years in the civil war. the opizatiposition says more t 200 killed following a battle. >>> new england is getting a heavy dose of snow and freezing temperatures. boston is expected to get up to eight inches and the city's mayor has declared a snow emergency. neighboring rhode island is also getting pounded over a foot of snow has already fallen in some parts of that state. >>> some good news this morning about former president george h.w. bush. we're told he is improving and has been moved out of the intensive care unit of the houston hospital where he was being treated f
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